Hebrew | Francais

Search


> > Archive

Shabbat Parashat R'ei 5777

Parashat Hashavua: Listening for Listenings Sake

Harav Shaul Yisraeli (based on Siach Shaul, pp. 501-502)

“The blessing – that you shall listen to the commandments …” (Devarim 11:27). The main blessing is not the external reward that one receives from Hashem but is the listening itself. Fortunate is the person who knows how to feel this, for then his life is like the Garden of Eden. When we make an appraisal of our lives, we will find that most people are not satisfied. Sometimes people think that it is because they are missing this or that, and they aim to obtain it so that they will finally be satisfied. Wonder of wonders – we always find ourselves lacking something, and we always have to toil to obtain it. It is like the edge of the sky in the eyes of a baby. The closer you get to it, the more it seems to be escaping us.

The blessing is to identify the source of blessing, and to realize that we are not at all looking in the right direction. It is easier than we realize to find satisfaction. It is actually in our hands, in what we possess – it is, “that you shall listen.”

It is reminiscent of the sorcerer in the story of Ashmedai (Gittin 68a). He searches for his treasure at the edge of the universe and does not realize that he is standing on it. That is what all of us do. We work so hard looking for our treasure, turn our hair white, and ruin our posture so that maybe we will find some satisfaction and happiness. Much of that work is for nothing. You already have the blessing – a daf of gemara, a perek of mishna, Chumash with Rashi. It is not that hard and does not require great exertion.

“The spirit will not be filled” – there is a parable of a simple city dweller who married a princess. If he brings her everything he can find, it will not be important to her, for she is a princess (Kohelet Rabba 6:1). The soul demands its nourishment. Instead, we give it food that it cannot digest because our soul is from above.

The job of the month of Elul is to fulfill the pasuk: “If a shofar will be sounded in the city, will the people not tremble?” (Amos 3:6). In other words, we need to shake the heart out of its complacency. Sometimes one is so sure of himself that he has no doubts about his decisions. Elul is there to loosen the nails we have placed around our path, which convinces us that we are always right and our motivations are always complete. Elul awakens doubt. In that way it is an introduction to the Ten Days of Repentance. It is interesting that the introduction is three times as long as the period of repentance itself. If a person does not realize he can be wrong, he does not realize he can sin, and then there can be no repentance. If we remove the wall of self-reliance, we will see the ugly truth … and we will realize for what we need to repent.   
Top of page
Print this page
Send to friend


Dedication

We daven for a complete and speedy refuah for:

Lillian bat Fortune

Eliezer Yosef ben Chana Liba

Yehoshafat Yecheskel ben Milka

Ro'i Moshe Elchanan ben Gina Devra

Together with all cholei Yisrael

 

Hemdat Yamim

is dedicated

to the memory of:

those who fell

in wars

for our homeland

Eretz Hemdah's beloved friends

and Members of

Eretz Hemdah's Amutah

Rav Shlomo Merzel z”l

whose yahrtzeit

is the 10th of Iyar

Rav Reuven Aberman

z"l

who passed away

on 9 Tishrei, 5776


Mr. Shmuel Shemesh 
who passed away on

Sivan 17, 5774

R' Eliyahu Carmel,

Rav Carmel's father,

who passed away on

8th of Iyar 5776


Mrs. Sara Wengrowsky

bat R’ Moshe Zev a”h.

who passed away on

10  Tamuz  5774


Rav Asher Wasserteil z"l

who passed away on

Kislev 9, 5769

R' Meir ben

Yechezkel Shraga Brachfeld

o.b.m

R ' Yaakov ben Abraham & Aisha

and

Chana bat Yaish & Simcha

Sebbag, z"l

 

Yitzchak Eizik

ben Yehuda Leib Usdan a"h,

whose Yahrtzeit

is the 29th of Av

 

Gital Gila

bat Eliyahu Michael a”h

on the occasion

of her yahrzeit, Av 21st


Rav Benzion Grossman

z"l

who passed away

23rd of Tamuz 5777


Hemdat Yamim

is endowed by

Les & Ethel Sutker
of Chicago, Illinois
in loving memory of
Max and Mary Sutker
and
Louis and Lillian Klein, z”l

site by entry.
Eretz Hemdah - Institute for Advanced Jewish Studies, Jerusalem All Rights Reserved | Privacy Policy. | Terms of Use.